For many people, a backyard deck is a place to barbecue, sunbathe, and host parties. For others, this can be a perfect spot for growing flowers, veggies, and other plants. If you belong to the latter group and you're planning a custom deck project, you'll definitely want to talk to your builder about having planters built into the deck. Instead of placing your own planters around the deck, the builder can construct planters of the appropriate size in the same wood as the deck, giving everything a crisp and professional look. When taking this approach, here are some things to plan for.
Shade Vs. Sun Position
You'll need to give some thought to which types of plants you'll be growing on the deck and whether they need the sun or the shade. Some plants thrive in the full sun, while others must be mostly in the shade. Keep these details in mind as you work with your deck builder on the design. For example, you'll want the planters for the plants that thrive in the full sun around the outer perimeter of the deck, and those that will hold shade plants closer to the house, where the house will provide shade for much of the day.
You'll be watering the plants in your deck planters frequently, and some of the water will run through or over the planters. You don't want standing water on the deck boards more than necessary, as it will expedite rot in the wood and also affect the look of the deck. Share this concern with your builder, who can then come up with a plan to avoid this problem. For example, the builder may choose to construct the planters so that there's a small gap around them, which will allow any excess water to harmlessly drain to the ground below.
The average deck will be designed to hold an average amount of weight, but you'll need to talk to your builder about your requests for planters before he or she finalizes the deck foundation plans. Multiple planters holding several cubic feet of earth, especially when wet, can add a significant amount of weight to the deck. The builder will definitely want to reinforce these areas with thicker beams and perhaps some additional posts so that the deck is strong enough to accommodate the extra weight that you'll be placing on it.
For more information, contact a company like Hufnagel Landscaping Inc.